Difference between revisions of "GeoView"

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'''All we need to understand and test GeoView.'''
'''All we need to understand and test GeoView.'''
== Why GeoView ? ==
== Why GeoView ? ==
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== ... ==
== ... ==
Your modifications are welcomed ...
Your modifications are welcomed ...

Revision as of 04:36, 15 February 2009

Work in progress.

All we need to understand and test GeoView.

Why GeoView ?

I would like to see my ancestors all around the world on a map. And if possible, I would like to see them moving during time periods.

How to do this easily and with the minimum of software to install ?

GeoView is one solution.

The html kits

We can use webkit or gtkmozembed to view html pages. If no one is installed, you'll never see GeoView.

If the two kits are installed, webkit will be used.

For web browsing, we need to be connected to the network.

Even if you have a html kit installed, you can always say : I don't mind ! I don't want to see the HtmlView.

For this, you can disallow Geoview in the Internet Maps preferences tab.


It's the future. Be aware, WebKit is always in development.

More and more projects are integrating webkit ...

The reason why for epiphany :



WebKit uses the libsoup library. You need the environment variable http_proxy.

Gecko ( GtkMozEmbed )

What will gtkmozembed be in the future ?

The embedding API of Gecko (GtkMozEmbed) has been unmaintained and stagnant for a long time.


GtkMozEmbed is proxy aware. I implement this and I use the http_proxy environment variable. Authentication is allowed. The http_proxy format used is :


To confirm : We need to use gnome-control-center to set the proxy.

The maps providers

There are a lot of providers. Some are free.

By default, the provider is OSM ( OpenStreetMap ).

This provider depends on the community and the maps are very light depending on the country. Nevertheless, the community made an extraordinary job since a few month. We can say OpenStreetMap is and will be the map for gramps.

Openlayers is free too and uses by default OSM map. A lot of private or non free maps depends on OpenLayers.

The most interesting is the IGN ( Institut Géographique National Français )[1] which offers an old map of France ( about 1780 ) but this provider needs a key. I'll speek about keys later.

You have Googlemaps, Yahoo! maps, Microsoft maps, ...


Like you can see, it's impossible to implement all providers maps. For this reason, some people created an api over all these providers api.

With only a few modification, you can use the map you want. And better! you can switch between the maps keeping the zoom and the centered position.

It's also in the development phase and is sometimes buggy.

For performances issues, I can confirm it takes approximatively 30 secondes to view 1000 markers for openstreetmap or google. If you have 2000 markers, this time is about 2 times 30 secondes.

For this, I limit one html page to 200 markers. I you have more than this limit, I create the necessary pages to see all your markers.

During testing with a places database for France ( > 35000 markers ), I set the limit to 20 markers which permit to create 1760 pages without problems. So we can say we have an unlimited number of markers. Only the file system space will limit us.

The provider Key

Gramps is not a web site. Keys are only for web sites. In GeoView, I use a specific functionality : We are working on local file instead of url, so we don't need a key. some providers like IGN needs key even in this case. So I can't use them. Why ?

  1. Too complex for final user's.
  2. We need a key by provider

In these case, I hope you understand the choice is limited even is mapstraction can do more.


We have no key, so we have a restricted access : About 10,000 to 15,000 requests by IP per day depending on the provider.

What is a request ? As I understand with the IGN ( OpenLayers ), a request is a tile ( an image ). You need several tiles for a view.

I think it is sufficient for the lambda genealogist.

The proxies

Everybody doesn't need a proxy. The majority of us are connected directly to internet. In this case, forget all this.

You need a proxy only if you installed one or if you depend on some internet providers.

How to get the html kits ?

It depends on the distribution you're working on ! They are listed in reverse order.

python-webkitgtk is also called pywebkitgtk



You needs libwebkit and python-webkitgtk.

Add to the /etc/apt/sources.list :

# for python-webkitgtk
deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/gwibber-team/ubuntu hardy main
# for libwebkit
deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/webkit-team/ubuntu hardy main

It's from nightly builds, so it can crash.

If you have some crash and want to install the working package, you can get libwebkit from the following url :



If you want gtkmozembed on ubuntu, you must install : python-gnome2-extras

It's stable but install many gnome packages even if you are on a kde based distribution.

Please, don't troll !



  • libwebkit-1_0

I didn't test GeoView on suse or opensuse. I need some feedback.

I found on example in : ftp5.gwdg.de/pub/opensuse/repositories/home:/bmotmans/openSUSE_<VERSION>/<ARCH>/

Replace <VERSION> by the fedora version you use. ie : Factory, 10.3, 1.0, ...

Replace <ARCH> by i586, x86_64, ...

  • pywebkit








You must use : WebKit-gtk

yum install WebKit-gtk pywebkitgtk




This is the same packager for ubuntu and debian, so go to the ubuntu paragraph.


install the python-gtkmozembed package.

windows XP/Vista

Perhaps the following link can help windows developpers :




This is standard on MAC. Can someone confirm this. Is there a python-webkit package on MAC ?



Your modifications are welcomed ...